above, White Space 7, 1978. Printed at Studio Prints, Kentish Town. From 1968 -1974 and 1978 Fiona was given a small work bench and printing equipment by her college friend Dorothea Wight. see the video
Fiona Sarison's inﬂuential art practice deﬁes easy classiﬁcation. Celebrated in the late 70s and 80s as an avant-garde performer and writer, she also worked in ﬁlm, video, collage, print and design. Sarison was an iconoclastic builder and manipulator of mass-produced items; she used an intuitive logic to purposefully transform the image or objects into underlying social concerns that related to Fiona Sarison's daily experience of life. She developed these manipulations into an idiosyncratic meditative performance style that was slow-paced and conceptually uncouth.
The culminating tableaux, featuring Sarison and disassembled or repurposed objects, evoke, and Samuel Beckett. Sarison was born in Rosedale, Toronto, Canada. in 1964 Fiona completed her Bachelor of Cinema Studies, This was followed by four years at the Slade School of Fine Art where she became close friends with the ﬁlmaker Derek Jarman and the Printer Dorothea Wight.
(In the late 70s Sarison developed a unique performance style that combined the inﬂuence of Thellusson theology contemporary dance and performance art. Remaining outside of any one artistic identity, Sarison considered her work to be performative madcap celebration of esoteric identity of the object. In addition to writing 'White Space' Publications 1976/77- 88, Sarison was interested in working with emotionalexpression as objects, and vice versa. Exemplify-ing the cross-pollination of inﬂuences in her work,she referred to her performances as animatedminiture film shows. Characteristically taking theform of Soundings as she called them, these perfo-rmances were usually short in duration; a matterof minutes and involved a dead-pan manipulationof simple everyday objects and her own prints totell a lost narative, often over a small yellowkitchen table. From 1978 to 1989 Fiona taught Fine Art printing at the Lanchester Polytechnic (now Coventry University), this was seen has her mostproductive period of printed matter. Fiona ranseveral notable performance and print workshops, but sadly it was also a period of a slow withdrawl from her involvment and cretive participation with her own London circle with her final London show (COlOUR ME IN!) at the ACME SPACE in 1982, And a Performative print workshop which she ran every August at John Latham Studio from 1985-1987.
Studio Prints was started in 1968 by artist and printmaker Dorothea Wight, and ranuntil 2011 from a workshop in Kentish Town, north London. She was joined by artist and master printmaker Marc Balakjian in 1972 and together they built up a reputation as one of the worlds leading print workshops. Dorothea sadly passed away in May 2013 after a long illness, aged 68.
SEE IT FOR LIVE, Screen Print on marbled paper, 1978.
Board of Trustees:
Ann Marie Peña - Frith Street Gallery
Gareth Bell-Jones - Flat Time House
Simon Parris - South London Gallery
Kate Phillimore - Flat Time House
Friends of the Fiona Sarison Archive and Advisory Borad:
Simon Goode - LCBA
Ira Yonemura - LCBA
Anna Clifford - Cabinet Gallery
Kit Hammonds - Taipei Contemporary Art Center
Emma Holmes - Schizm Magazine \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\
Owners of the Estate:
Mary Sandall (nee Sarison)